South Africa Nature Reserves : Game Reserves & National Parks
South African nature reserves and national parks have breathtaking scenery, and offer great outdoor activities. Pack up the tent or book a chalet and load up with provisions and head into the bush with the whole family.
Take in the spectacular scenery while hiking with the family or friends. Enjoy bird watching and game viewing, fishing, set on 4x4 trails, go swimming and canoeing. Explore the rich cultural history of South Africa and see ancient Bushmen rock art.
See Popular Interests for inspiration.
With the wealth of nature reserves and national parks on offer how do you choose where to go? Our Popular Interests will help make the choice easy. From adrenaline junkies to family groups there is a destination to suit everyone.
South Africa nature reserves and national parks are stunning in the scope of their landscapes, flora and wildlife. All Reserves have been categorized by the South African province they are located in. Or use our helpful guide to Nature Reserves near South African towns
Our Nature Reserves Camping Tips section contains useful information about camping with children and how to ‘green’ your camping experience.
The Travel Tips & Advice and advice section provides useful information that will help you have a trouble free holiday and find the best spots for a selection of interests.
For detailed information on specific Nature Reserves and National Parks in South Africa see our Travel Guides section.
See the What To Do Guide for a list of inspiring activities and destinations.
Your Guide to Week-end Breaks and Family Holidays in Nature
Come and discover the rich biodiversity and untamed beauty of South Africa Nature Reserves and National Parks. From the airy peaks of the Drakensberg, to dense forests, arid deserts and beautiful coastline, there is something for the whole family.
Grab the kids and set out on scenic hiking trails, enjoy bird watching, go fishing, quad biking and mountain biking. The Big Five are closer than you think, many reserves within a couple of hours of the major cities offer spectacular game viewing opportunities.
World-renowned as South Africa's most famous national park, the Kruger National Park consists of nearly two million hectares of wilderness. It has the greatest diversity of wildlife in the region and offers excellent affordable and luxury safari accommodation. It is one of the best places in the country to see the Big Five.
Go on exhilarating hikes in the Drakensberg or see lots of wildlife, including the Big Five (especially Rhino), in the Hluhluwe- Umfolozi Game Reserve. Combine diving and snorkelling with your safari and discover the wetlands and amazing marine life of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park – a World Heritage Site.
The Eastern Cape Nature Reserves offer malaria-free game viewing making them an ideal destination for families. Go on exciting adventure activities in the Garden Route National Park. See many Elephants in the Addo Elephant National Park and discover the unique flora of the region which contains all seven biomes.
Discover the splendour of the mountains of the Golden Gate Highlands National Park which is named after how the light reflects off its sandstone peaks. The Park also contains some great Bushmen rock painting sites and is home to the rare bearded vulture.
South Africa's Limpopo Province is home to many esteemed nature reserves, including the Kruger National Park, Madikwe, Pilanesberg and many others. Come and encounter the Big Five and lots of other wildlife while on exciting game drives and bush walks.
The Northern Cape has vast nature reserves with breathtaking scenery. Come and explore the desert landscape of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and see Oryx and black-maned Kalahari Lion. The Augrabies Falls National Park is home to the thundering Augrabies Waterfalls.
Come and explore the Table Mountain National Park – one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. See the penguins at Boulders Beach, and enjoy excellent birding in the West Coast National Park. Set out on the many spectacular hiking trails in the region.
Mpumalanga is one of the best places in the country to see big game. The Blyde River Canyon Reserve in Mpumalanga is situated on the Panorama Route which is famous for its incredible scenery; highlights include the Three Rondavels, Bourke's Luck Potholes and God's Window.
The North West Province is one of the top wildlife areas in South Africa. Pilanesberg National Park and the Madikwe Game Reserve are close to Sun City making them ideal for day trips. Pilanesberg offers a range of accommodation including safari lodges, bush camps and resorts.
The Lion and Rhino Park which is part of the Cradle of Humankind (a World Heritage Site) is the perfect family day out. You can see three of the Big Five in the national park. Many of the country’s most famous parks and reserves can be easily reached from Gauteng.